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Rory Schlein rides for Rusty
Photo by Dave Payne
Tue 04 Mar 2014 by Mike Hunter
Elite League Riders' Champion turns out for Rusty's Testimonial
Last season's Elite League Riders' Champion Rory Schlein is one of three full-time Elite League riders racing in the Rusty Harrison Testimonial at Workington on Saturday 5th April, and he's given himself quite an itinerary to be able to pay tribute to a rider he first raced against in junior speedway.

He explained “Rusty asked me in January to do the meeting and I said ‘no problem', but then he changed the date. My Polish club Daugavpils then changed their fixture, an away match, their first of the season, to Sunday 6th! There's no other meeting on in Poland that day.

“So I will be riding at Gniezno on the 1st, 2nd and 3rd, which is training. I was supposed to do a test meeting for them on the Saturday but I told them I'm doing Rusty's meeting. Then I fly back for the match at Daugavpils so I won't be able to hang around at Workington!”

The two Aussies have been friends and rivals for a long time. “I've never actually ridden with Rusty, I've obviously raced against him when he's been with Workington and Glasgow. What a lot of people don't know is that me and Rusty used to race against each other in juniors.

“When Rusty was at the peak of his junior speedway, winning the Under-16s, I was just coming on. I remember when I came down to Adelaide for the first time and did a few meetings, we had some right ding-dong battles in the juniors.

“It was similar when he was at Workington. He had that scare obviously with the blood clots etc., and I was happy he got back on a bike. For a speedway rider, OK we do it for a job but we also do it for the love of it, and when it's taken away from you prematurely that's hard.

“So I was glad he was able to come back and do what he loves.”

The field for the meeting so far is: Peter Kildemand, Ty Proctor, Rory Schlein, Kauko Nieminen, Josh Grajczonek, Rene Bach, Simon Stead, Richard Lawson, Kenneth Hansen, Aaron Summers, Ricky Wells, Stuart Robson, Theo Pijper, Adam Roynon.
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Last Updated :  Tue 04 Mar 2014, 21:50 UK
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Photography
Dave Payne, Adrian Randall